Rooftop Farm
From: Thomas Lofft (
Date: Tue, 28 Jul 2015 12:57:26 -0700 (PDT)
  Grace Kim grace [at] Wrote: 
Subject: [C-L]_ support our rooftop farm
Capitol Hill Urban Cohousing is well under construction - we are framing in the 
4th floor.
Visit our Facebook page to see photos.

But the reason for writing is to ask for your support.
I have learned over the past decade that cohousers are a generous bunch, 
especially when it comes to supporting a community oriented initiative. And 
that's what we are trying to do through our rooftop farm.

Our plan is to create an urban farm on the roof of our cohousing project that 
will produce food year round. The purpose of the farm is three-fold: 1) to 
teach our children where our food comes from; 2) demonstrate that urban 
agriculture doesn't have to be ground-related (typically thought of as planter 
strips and backyards); and 3) be a catalyst for a neighborhood food network.

We also need to build the farm to meet our land use requirements (but due to 
dramatic construction escalation in Seattle this past year we had to VE it out 
of our budget).  So we are now asking our friends and cohousing supporters to 
help us realize our goal! We need to raise $30K, but are crowdsourcing it - 
starting with a goal of $10K and subsequent stretch goals of $5K.
We know that is ambitious... but as much as every child needs a village, every 
farm needs a village to help sow the seeds, water, weed and harvest. Will you 
help by a donation of $5 or $500? Every bit helps.

And if you are able to donate $1000 for the dinner, I'd be happy to host you in 
our new building!

If you aren't able to give, might you consider forwarding this note on to a 

Thanks for your consideration and support.
grace h. kim | schemata workshop inc.
aia, principal architect
p 206.285.1589<>
new location
112 5th ave n, floor 2-south
seattle, wa 98109

I applaud the efforts of Grace and Capital Hill Urban Cohousing for their 
multifaceted efforts at developing sustainable urban cohousing. 
One of the complications I have often witnessed is the counterproductive 
efforts of government to create greater obstacles towards noble minded private 
efforts like these to increase sustainability.  I have seen where improvements 
like solar collectors, grey water collectors, and other such 'green' 
improvements get added to the assessor's tax rolls, causing increasing private 
tax burden in response to private efforts to achieve desirable public 
interests. I am wondering of the Seattle City/ King County assessor will treat 
the rooftop farm as a money-making enterprise and add property value to the tax 
base assessment for further increased property taxes. 
That question suggests to me that it may be appropriate to incorporate the 
rooftop farm as a separate non-profit, 501 (c) (3) educational and charitable 
enterprise. As such, the enterprise could engage in educational endeavors, 
contribute surplus (non-subscribed) produce to food kitchens, and solicit 
contributions from the public as charitable, tax-deductible contributions. The 
farm enterprise, in turn, could rent its rooftop space from the cohousing 
ownership enterprise, transferring funding as prepaid rent to the cohousing 
enterprise to fund the completion of the rooftop.
Another suggestion is to presell community supported agriculture (CSA) 
subscriptions for future produce yield. A committed supporter could prepay five 
years membership subscription fees to help advance funding for the development 
of the rooftop farm.  Don't mention this to any securities freaks. 
Incidentally, I would hope that the effective storm water management factor of 
rooftop rain water collection and treatment through transpiration was given due 
credit in project review and approval. It's much more effective than burying 
collection and storage pipes under parking lots.
Best wishes for a prompt and joyous, green move-in.
Tom Lofft
Liberty Village, MD

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